Most of us know that in extreme heat, animals don’t sweat to stay cool like us humans do. Instead they pant. But panting can only get them so far. Without being able to sweat to keep cool, over excessive panting can lead to heat stroke and heat stroke can lead to the death of your pet. Prevent that from happening by knowing the warning signs and taking measures like those mentioned below to keep your pets in great health when enjoying outdoor fun. All of these tips are from a vet and a pet owner who has dealt with this before.
First, Know The Signs Of Heat Stroke In Dogs
Keep an eye out for excessive panting, agitation, hyper-salivation, lethargy, vomiting and diarrhea. If these things get really bad, it can lead to seizures. If you are at all concerned, call your vet. Catching heat stroke early is the best thing you can do for your pet and spraying or wetting down an overheated dog can help. Never apply ice, however, because it can interfere with an animals ability to get rid of heat. Instead apply alcohol on the pads of their feet or in their armpits or groin area. Small and flat-nosed dogs like pigs, English bulldogs, and Persian cats are at higher risk because of their smaller noses and their windpipes aren’t that wide. Breathing through them is like breathing through a straw and panting isn’t as efficient. Also, keep an eye out with old dogs, and those who are obese or have thick fur. They are also at increased risked for heat stroke.
Pay Attention To Your Pups Fur
Don’t leave pets with darker fur out in direct sunlight, because they will absorb heat. Also, watch pets with light fur because they can get sunburned. So with that, consider using pet safe sunscreen.
Find Ways To Keep Pets Cool When Outside
There are several ways for keeping pets cool and safe while outside in the heat. First, choose well ventilated areas with plenty of water and shade. Consider only walking your pets during the morning or evening hours when it is cooler and always walk your pets on grass rather than the hot sidewalk or streets. Also, consider sitting outside and setting up a kiddie pool or have a water mister ready for your pup. This is a great option if you live in an apartment or a house that keeps hot in the summer or doesn’t have good air conditioning. This option is also great for kids and adults alike. If you are going to use a garden hose though, remember to flush out scalding water first before spraying down pets or anyone.
Other Important Things To Remember
Never leave your dog in the car. Even when its a nice 70s day outside, it can get to 102 to 110 inside a car in a matter of 10 minutes. Don’t forget to exercise smart too. Warmer weather outside usually inspires people to want to take their workouts to the great outdoors. However, if your dog has been a couch potatoes for a little while don’t take it out for an incredibly long hike up a tall mountain straight off the bat. Work up to that sort of thing and don’t forget to keep yourself and your pet hydrated.